BULLHEAD CITY — Report cards in Bullhead City will have a new look for the upcoming school year. And Flex Friday will largely be replaced with after-school hours dedicated to offering students additional instruction.
The Bullhead City Elementary School District governing board voted Thursday evening to adopt new report cards that include not just letter grades, but also students’ progress toward relevant standards.
An example seen at the meeting shows two sides, with the front showing letter grades and space for scoring how the student has done on the standards.
Supt. Carolyn Stewart said the BCESD’s cards will differ slightly from the example, used by another Arizona school district; it will use the state education department’s language identifying students on a continuum between “minimally proficient” and “highly proficient.”
The back side, Stewart said, will include topics such as the child’s “citizenship” — how he or she listens and follows directions and similar topics — and comments from the teacher.
Board President Diane Beardsley said she liked the idea of report cards showing how students are doing on which standards, yet was glad to see the district not going away from letter grades.
Board members last month expressed concern that the new report cards might be confusing to parents without letter grades.
Also approved was an alternative to Flex Fridays — special days that BCESD campuses took students in for enrichment and intervention activities. Board members had been frustrated with low attendance among students needing intervention, and asked district administrators to look for ideas to improve the program.
At the same time, Stewart said, federal grants that paid much of the cost of staffing Flex Fridays have expired, drastically cutting the staff available for the program.
Having intervention and enrichment on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, she said, allows the BCESD to staff the sessions with on-duty teachers. She said that using school days should reduce the number of no-shows, and running an additional late bus will possibly give some kids the opportunity to participate in other after-school activities.
Another benefit, she said, is that students get the intervention a lot sooner, and will run less risk of struggling with more concepts as a class moves along in the curriculum. The BCESD averaged about two Flex Fridays a month, but had none after April last school year, due to budget cuts.
Fox Creek Junior High School will have a different intervention and enrichment setup (probably four days), Stewart said, and still will see Flex Fridays.
Board members also approved a salary increase plan for 2019-2020. The base teacher salary will rise from $36,500 to $37,500, and each principal will get a $1,600 raise.
Classified staff, including clerks, bus drivers and paraprofessionals will receive hourly raises of 30 cents.